Monday, 17 April 2017
Altenew Build A Flower - Camellia
I was thrilled to discover last month that they were introducing Altenew Build A Flower, a monthly set on floral dies and stamps that can only be bought as a set. The first flower to the collection is the Camellia a single bloom that measures approx 8.5 x 7.5cm in size and is stamped in 3 layers.
The set includes a triple leaf stamp again with 3 layers, in the cards I've created with the image I've done the top layer in a darker contrasting ink colour and also using gold embossing powder, I love both effects but think that the gold embossed card looks more regal and would be perfect for special occasion cards. Although I must admit to liking to add gold embossing and splashes of gold to lots of my projects.
As it turned out I wasn't 100% accurate, you can see some of the cards I created using the freebie here, but the beauty of these layering stamps is they are very forgiving, and if you don't get it spot on it doesn't matter, if nature things are not always picture perfect! I quickly ordered the Vintage Roses and Beautiful Day sets and have since acquired more Altenew stamp and die sets, even buying some none floral, because I love the quality of the stamps and the beautiful images.
I can see me getting lots of use out of each of the Build a Flower sets, flowers can be used to decorate cards for many occasions and if you use fabric paints, you can use the stamps to decorate fabrics, something I plan on doing in the not too distant future with a selection of archival inks. I've yet to make a card with more than one of the camellia images on, I think being a large bold flower you can get away with just 1 image which makes creating lots of cards a doddle.
I used my MISTI to stamp the images, to save having to keep moving the stamp, I cut some white card in to 9cm x 9cm pieces and worked through stamping all the base layers in one colour, then switching to the next colour and moving on to the second and third layers. Doing this means you only have to align the stamp once making it easier and quicker to stamp lots of the images in one go.
I used Altenew inks to stamp my images, not that I'm a fan girl or anything, I love the fact that Altenew inks come in cube sets that contain light, medium and dark shades of ink that contrast making them ideal for stamping layered images. I used the Red Cosmos and Green Fields ink cube sets for the red camellia card, and Rose Petal and Tropical Forest sets for the pink colour way and Tropical Forest again for the leaves on the peachy orange card and the Warm and Cozy ink cube set to create the orange camellia.
The cards themselves came together really quickly after I'd stamped and die cut the camellia's out, and I have lots more camellias ready to use on other cards. For the card in the main photo I used a card blank from my Maybe Someday box, when I was making the wedding invitations for my stepson, I embossed lots of patterns until I found the one I truly liked, those discarded cards with embossed patterns not right for the invites went in my MSD box for use at another point. I love that when I need something to cement an idea in place, I can dip in to that box and come up trumps.
The embossing folder I used on a 6" x 6" white card blank is by X-Cut and is called "Square Gilt Frame", I think it makes a stunning frame for a clean and simple card. I added the camellia on foam pads to give it some dimension and glued the 3 sets of leaves direct to the card, I finished the design off with a sentiment die cut from gold foiled card using one of the dies from the Paper Smooches Love and Cherish die set. For the other two cards I used some papers from a Wild Rose Studios paper pad called 'Peach Blossom' that I got free when I subscribed to a magazine a couple of years ago, the colours were perfect for the cards I wanted to create.
The stamped edged panel was created with one of my recent bargains found on Amazon, nesting die sets good quality at cheap prices. The postage stamp style set is known as a Square Wave Frame and cost me £3.99 with free postage, not bad for a set of 6 dies where the largest is 12cm x 12cm and the smallest 2cm x 2cm. They cut beautifully as well, and are very strong and sturdy. I have bought from two companies so far Demiawaking and CalistoUK, of the two I've bought mostly from Demiawaking, CalistoUK takes forever to get your items to you, but I could have just been unlucky. There are lots of sets available, I have to say that I've bough some of the expensive Avery Elle and My Favorite Things dies and these cheap one cut just as well.
That said on the waved border dies, one of the dies isn't cut properly so the edge is flawed, but you have to be looking for it to notice and for £2.99 for a set of 4 dies as opposed to £12 or more for a set of 3 similar dies by Lawn Fawn the saving is worth it, if it means that I have more money in my pocket to indulge my passion for florals. Like anything its buyer beware, not all of the dies are good quality, but if you read reviews and ask around you can weed out the good from the bad.
I'm already anticipating the next Build a Flower release which is a gorgeous large Aster image, this one comes with 4 sentiments, I can't wait to play with this beauty, and I'm really looking forward to what the next 10 months with bring in terms of floral images from one of my fav stamp and die companies.